Coastal Law student engagement and satisfaction results excel

According to the results of a 2012 survey taken by law students across the United States, Florida Coastal School of Law excels in almost all measured areas, often exceeding national law school benchmarks by significant amounts. In particular, the school scored well in categories measuring the attributes most important to the legal community. Read on for the full story and a link to a results presentation.

Every year, law students across the country have opportunities to respond to The Law School Survey of Student Engagement (LSSSE). The LSSSE asks students about their law school experience - how they spend their time, what they feel they've gained from their classes, their satisfaction with career services including counseling and career goal development, financial aid advising and support, information technology services and library support, and their assessment of the quality of interactions with faculty and other students.

This year Coastal Law met, at least, the national average for all law schools in virtually every category. However, in particular, the school significantly outclassed benchmarks measuring satisfaction with the development of practical legal skills, career development support, student interaction and collaboration with faculty and other students, and the emphasis of ethics and personal values inside and outside of the classroom.

Whereas the national LSSSE average in measuring the importance of ethics in law school has remained largely flat since 2007, Coastal Law student satisfaction and engagement in that area has risen 16 percent.

In addition to participating in the LSSSE survey, since 2008 Coastal Law has administered an anonymous survey to members of the Florida Bar, in all circuits and practice areas, to learn which law school attributes are most important to them.

The results revealed that the areas in which Coastal Law shine match those top qualities.

When asked to assess the importance of the various attributes of legal education in 2011, the more than 775 lawyers surveyed in Florida said it was important for law schools to produce graduates who have high ethical standards and engage in professional practices and behaviors that reflects these standards (94 percent of those surveyed reported this attribute was very important or extremely important). This has remained the case since the 2009 survey, regardless of region of practice, employing organization, or size of private law firm.

The legal community survey also revealed the second most important attribute was that law schools graduate students who are prepared to work collaboratively. According to LSSSE administrators, extensive research also indicates good educational practices in the classroom and interactions with others, such as faculty and peers, are directly related to high-quality student outcomes.

Once again Coastal Law surpassed the national benchmark. The school scored well when reviewing responses to questions in the LSSSE that ask to what extent schools encourage contact among students from different economic, social, sexual orientation, and racial or ethnic backgrounds, and measure the quality of relationships with other students, faculty members and with administrative staff and offices.

The LSSSE focuses squarely on many promising teaching and learning practices and other aspects of the law school environments that are thought to be linked to high levels of student performance. More than 140,000 law students have so far completed the survey, making it one of the largest contemporary databases of legal education.

Unlike many law schools, Coastal Law participates in the survey every year.

For more information on how Florida Coastal School of Law students responded to the 2012 LSSSE versus those at other law schools click here.

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Coastal Law FY 12 LSSSE Results Overview V1.pptx375.05 KB